Chinatown-International District

What's Happening Now?

We are partnering with the Chinatown-International District (CID) community to address a set of neighborhood-identified priorities. Our CID Framework and Implementation planning process will result in a set of community recommendations to address these key priorities.

A community Advisory Committee has been formed to provide overall direction and to oversee the work of five priority area Workgroups. The Advisory Committee meets monthly in the neighborhood. Its meetings are public and are open to all.

We have established an interdepartmental team (IDT) that brings together key City staff who are working on policies, programs and capital investments in the CID neighborhood. This team meets regularly to share information on work underway, will apply the City's Racial Equity Toolkit (RET) to multiple projects collectively, and will support the work of the CID Advisory Committee and its five Workgroups.

Click to enlarge the illustration below to see how the Framework and Implementation Plan work has been structured to into five major Elements and how the Advisory Committee and its five Workgroups will work to engage with the CID Community.

Project Elements and Advisory Committee Structure

Project Outcomes

The CID Framework and Implementation Plan will be the vehicle for documenting, communicating and guiding the implementation of recommendations related to the five key priority areas.

We anticipate the following outcomes:

  • Implementation of strategies and tools to help preserve affordable commercial spaces in the CID
  • Implementation of policy and/or legislation that enhances affordable housing strategies in the CID.
  • Advancing the development of the Little Saigon Landmark Project.
  • Recommendations for culturally appropriate design guidelines for new development in the CID and updated guidelines for the ISRD.
  • A consultant report on the feasibility for transitioning City facilities out of the Charles Street Campus property and recommendations for future community-oriented uses.
  • Improved communication with the community regarding capital improvement projects in the CID and better coordination of their implementation.
  • CID Public Realm report that documents existing, planned and potential future public realm improvements in the CID and incorporates the placemaking efforts of community-based organizations.

Get Involved

We are partnering with community stakeholders (residents, community organizations, business and property owners) to develop a Framework and Implementation Plan that responds to the CID community's priorities for future investments and improvements.

Together with the CID Advisory Committee, its Workgroups and Community Liaisons we will ensure an inclusive process where the community will identify specific strategies and projects that will support implementation of recommendations that advance identified neighborhood priorities over the next several years.

The CID Advisory Committee

The CID Advisory Committee collaborates directly with the members of the City's Interdepartmental Team and engages with the community via Workgroups to ensure that the implementation actions reflect the voices and balanced interests of the community.

CID Advisory Committee Members:

Pradeepta Upadhyay, Co-Chair
Maiko Winkler Chin, Co-Chair
Cassie Chinn
Elaine Ishihara
Esther Lucero
Jessa Timmer
Marlon Herrera
Miye Moriguchi
Quynh Pham
Shanti Breznau
Sonny Nguyen
Sue-May Eng
Sunshine Monastrial
Tanya Woo
Tammy Deets
Tiernan Martin

Advisory Committee Meeting Schedules
The CID Advisory Committee typically meets the 4th Wednesday of the month from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Community Room at Hirabayashi Place (442 S. Main St.).

CID Advisory Committee Workgroups
Five Workgroups have been formed that will focus on the five Elements of the Framework and Implementation Plan. Each Workgroup is comprised of members of the CID Advisory Committee, additional community members who have expressed interest, and key City staff members who are leading work on project elements. Community priorities will guide each Workgroup's work. Sign up for a workgroup by emailing Janet Shull.

Project Workgroups - Prioritized Plan Elements

Community Development and Stabilization
This workgroup is considering a range of strategies to preserve affordability and address potential displacement of small businesses, including non-profit organizations, that contribute significantly to the neighborhood's cultural identify. This workgroup will also focus on strategies to ensure that development pressure does not result in displacement of the neighborhood's affordable housing resources and to encourage a healthy mix of housing at various levels of affordability. The Office of Economic Development and the Office of Housing will play key roles for the City.

ISRD expansion and Design Review
The CID neighborhood currently falls within the catchment area of three design review areas. The City Council has passed an ordinance that will expand the ISRD boundary to include the entire CID neighborhood on January 1, 2018. This workgroup will support the development of design guidelines for the Little Saigon neighborhood and to help inform potential amendments to the existing ISRD Guidelines and the underlying Land Use Code. Department of Neighborhoods Historic Preservation program staff will play a lead role in this work. DON and OPCD have secured consultant resources to support this work.

Charles Street Campus Master Plan Analysis
The CID community has long expressed a desire for the City to engage in a process to explore the feasibility of transitioning current City uses out of the Charles Street Yard facility, to provide opportunities for broader community use. This workgroup is working with the City's Department of Finance and Administrative Services in a consultant study of the potential to surplus some or all of the Charles Street Yard to provide future redevelopment opportunities. The study will focus on departmental operational needs, tradeoffs and costs and benefits of various options.

Capital Project Coordination
This workgroup creates a forum for City and CID neighborhood review of planned City and other major public capital projects to ensure coordination, look for leveraging opportunities, consider project timing and to inform outreach and mitigation efforts. The Department of Neighborhoods has a lead coordination role. Senior staff from City capital departments are participating in this workgroup.

Public Realm planning
This workgroup will work closely with the One Center City project to map existing public realm/open space assets and identify future improvements. Elements  include park development, streetscape improvement projects, transit hub area improvements and other projects. The Department of Transportation (SDOT) and Parks Department staff play key roles in this workgroup.

We would like to hear your ideas about how to shape the future of the Chinatown-International District neighborhood. You can also sign-up for our listserv to receive updates about this project (see email form on the right, or scroll down to the bottom of the page on mobile).

Project Documents

The Chinatown-International District Framework and Implementation Plan will be the vehicle for documenting, communicating, and guiding the implementation of coordinated capital improvements in the neighborhood. Check this page often as we will update to add meeting notes and project documents in the months ahead.

Advisory Committee meeting notes:

Workgroup meeting notes:

Workgroup 1 - Community Development and Stabilization

Workgroup 2 - ISRD and Design Review:

Workgroup 3 - Charles Street Campus Master Plan

Workgroup 4 - Capital Project Coordination

Workgroup 5 - Public Realm


The CID Framework and Implementation Plan builds on the work of many as represented in these studies and plans that have captured the community's vision for the future.



Winter 2016 - Spring 2017

  • Project Scoping
  • Develop overall workplan

Spring - Summer 2017

  • Establish Interdepartmental Team 
  • Establish Advisory Committee

Summer - Fall 2017

  • Convene Advisory Committee
  • Establish Advisory Committee Workgroups
  • Fine-tune workplan for each Element and its Workgroup

Fall 2017 - Winter 2017

  • Convene Workgroups
  • Develop Community Outreach Plan 
  • Develop template for applying the Racial Equity Toolkit to multiple CID capital projects
  • Develop Framework for future investments
  • Share proposed Framework with the Community

Winter 2017 - Summer 2018

  • Workgroups develop recommendations for implementation
  • Racial Equity Toolkit is applied to multiple projects in the CID
  • Advisory Committee and IDT consider Workgroup recommendations
  • Ongoing community outreach to inform implementation actions

Summer 2018 and Beyond

  • CID Implementation Plan is developed and shared with community 
  • Implementation Plan recommendations are formalized and presented to Mayor and City Council
  • Develop a structure for ongoing community involvement with implementation of coordinated capital investments

Chinatown-International District Timeline

Click on image to enlarge